'We Are in Some Kind of Jail': Taliban Lets 200 Americans and Others Depart Kabul, No Word on Glenn Beck's Charter Planes
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The Taliban finally allowed 200 Americans and other foreign nationals to fly out of Afghanistan Thursday.
They were the first international flights out of Kabul's airport since President Joe Biden pulled U.S. forces out of the country.
However, there still has been no word if the six private planes chartered by conservative media host Glenn Beck's Nazarene Fund and Mercury One charity will be allowed to depart an airport in the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif.
The Taliban grounded the flights after a breakdown in negotiations with the U.S. State Department, according to an NGO official.
Newsweek confirmed that more than 100 Americans, along with another 1,500 refugees, were being blocked from flying out, even though they were already on planes at the airport.
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken urged the Taliban on Wednesday to allow the private charter flights to leave the country, according to Voice of America.
"As of now, the Taliban are not permitting the charter flights to depart. They claim that some of the passengers do not have the required documentation," said Blinken during a press conference with German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas at Ramstein Air Base in Germany.
"The bottom line is: Those charter flights need to be able to depart. And we will work every day to make sure that they're able to do that," Blinken said.
Hundreds of vulnerable Afghans are waiting for permission from Afghanistan's Taliban rulers to board prearranged charter flights standing by at the airport in Mazar-e-Sharif.
The group includes dozens of American citizens and green card holders and their families, the Afghans and their American advocates say.
"We think we are in some kind of jail," said one Afghan woman among the would-be evacuees gathered at one large hotel in Mazar-e-Sharif.
She described the Americans and green-card holders in their group as elderly parents of Afghan-American citizens in the United States.
Taliban leaders say they will allow people with proper documents to leave the country. Taliban officials insist they are currently going through the manifests, and passenger documents, for the charter flights at Mazar-e-Sharif.
The members of the Taliban's new government include several men who have been designated by the U.S. as terrorists.
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